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Philippines top origin of dengue cases in HK this year

28 March 2020

By The SUN

Dengue is caused by the Aedes Egypti mosquito, which abounds in the Philippines

Travelers from the Philippines have accounted for seven of the 18 dengue fever cases recorded in Hong Kong since Jan 1, a report from the Department of Health said.

Four cases were imported from Indonesia, two each from Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, and one from Cambodia, the CHP said.

The Centre for Health Protection released on Mar 27 the latest data on dengue cases, as it strongly urged the public to maintain strict environmental hygiene, mosquito control and personal protective measures locally and when traveling.


From Mar 6 to 26 alone, the CHP recorded three imported dengue cases. Two patients had been to Indonesia and a third had been to the Philippines during the incubation period.

The CHP also said it has been closely monitoring the latest dengue fever situation in neighboring areas and other countries. Among these is Guangdong province in China, which recorded 15 cases of dengue during the past year,  while Taiwan said it had 49 imported cases.

The mosquito-borne disease has been plaguing the Philippines for a few decades now, but it was only last year that dengue was declared an epidemic by the government.
Statistics released by the World Health Organization show that in 2019, the Philippines had 429,409 dengue cases, the second biggest number after Brazil, which recorded 2.23 million cases. For this year so far, the Philippines reported 37,058 cases.

The CHP said the public should stay vigilant and carry out effective mosquito prevention and control measures.

“Travelers returning from areas affected by dengue should apply insect repellent for 14 days upon arrival in Hong Kong. If feeling unwell, seek medical advice promptly and provide travel details to the doctor,” a spokesman for the CHP said.
He said to control mosquito breeding, the public should: 
·     Thoroughly check all gully traps, roof gutters, surface channels and drains to prevent blockage;
   ·     Scrub and clean drains and surface channels with an alkaline detergent compound at least once a week to remove  any deposited mosquito eggs;
   ·    Properly dispose of refuse, such as soft drink cans, empty bottles and boxes, in covered litter containers;
   ·    Completely change the water of flowers and plants at least once a week. The use of saucers should be avoided if possible;

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 ·    Level irregular ground surfaces before the rainy season;
   ·    Avoid staying in shrubby areas; and
   ·    Take personal protective measures such as wearing light-colored long-sleeved clothes and trousers and apply insect repellent containing DEET to clothing or uncovered areas of the body when doing outdoor activities. 
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